BBC Radio 4

James and Brenda

Writer, The Archers

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Brenda Tucker is far from delighted to have James Bellamy back in Ambridge, especially as he's recuperating in the Dower House, which also contains the Amside offices where she works.

Because they have history...

They first met in April 2005 when Brenda was 24 and James was 32. He was visiting his mother and licking his wounds following a difficult break-up.

Brenda was forced off the road because of James' reckless driving in his shiny 4x4. When she found him the next day and called him a stupid idiot, she was taken aback when he turned on the charm. He agreed with her and offered to pay for any damage to her car. As it happened, there was none, but he insisted that he took her for a coffee to apologise properly.

James charmed impressionable Brenda with talk of his high-flying, property developer lifestyle. She found herself apologising for being so cross and moaned about being in a rut in her job at Radio Borsetshire. James airily offered to get in touch with some of his contacts in London and before long Brenda found herself asking James out.

Lilian's pleasure that James was 'getting back on the horse' soon evaporated when she discovered the identity of the new girl. She had been daggers drawn with Brenda ever since the younger woman had supposedly stolen Scott, the toy-boy with whom Lilian had scandalised the village following her return from Guernsey in 2001.

Unconcerned James told Brenda what his mother thought was irrelevant. Brenda blushed when he told her she was beautiful, and just what he needed to get over his last relationship with the bitch-from-hell. The alarm bells should have rung at this point, but Brenda was rapidly falling for this smooth-talking sophisticate.

Very soon, James started to show his true colours, forgetting they'd arranged to meet because of champagne-induced hangovers. At one point he indirectly slagged off Brenda (who he'd stood up the night before), not realising it was her mother Betty that he was talking to.

His promises of helping Brenda's career soon proved empty, as he backtracked on his offer of putting her in touch with his supposed journalist friends. And on 24 May, when she started to talk about moving in with him in London, he quickly ended things, cruelly telling her he didn't want her anywhere near him ever again.

James escaped, leaving Brenda to cry on the shoulders of a rather bewildered Tom Archer.

But that's another story.

Keri Davies is an Archers scriptwriter and web producer

  • Picture shows Amy Shindler (Brenda Tucker) and Roger May (James Bellamy)

  • Read about Brenda and James in our Who's Who

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